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Colts earn themselves a breather

Robin Hood 0

Devonshire Colts 2

Ten-men Devonshire Colts pulled further away from the relegation zone with an impressive victory over Robin Hood at Goose Gosling Field on Saturday night.

Zuri Darrell's 24th minute strike gave the visitors a 1-0 advantage at half-time before Lozendro Symonds made the points safe from the penalty spot.

The win was Colts's first in seven matches and came despite the fact they play for nearly an hour a man short after Quinton Jones was sent off in the 37th minute after receiving a second booking for dissent.

Robin Hood, meanwhile, dropped further behind Dandy Town in the title race and their inability to take their chances in front of goal cost them dearly.

In a strange twist, Hood relinquished their numerical advantage when Kyle Lightbourne, the Hood head coach, asked referee Anthony Francis to take his striker Antwan Russell out of the game with seven minutes remaining. By that stage Hood had made all their substitutions.

Lightbourne later declined to give a reason why he brought his striker off, however, Russell was heard earlier asking the coaching staff to replace him, a plea that fell on deaf ears.

Colts's victory was their first since November 22 when they beat PHC Zebras at Police Field and more importantly moved them five points clear of the relegation zone with four matches left to play in the season.

“This was a very important game for us and we needed these three points,” Gerald Bean, the Colts coach, said. “This victory took a lot of pressure off of us in terms of relegation. It gives us more breathing room.

“The team worked hard and got their just rewards. We went down to ten-men through indiscipline, and that's something we will have to sort out.”

Hood pressed early and nearly made the breakthrough when Russell broke through. But the striker's effort struck the legs of Gregory Rose, the Colts goalkeeper.

Colts took the lead against the run of play after Darrell beat Timmy Figureido, the Hood goalkeeper, at his near post.

The hosts should have got on the board when Russell slipped the ball past the advancing Rose only to see it roll inches wide of the open net, and then sliced Ereico Outerbridge's inviting free kick wide when scoring seemed easier.

Colts suffered a setback eight minutes before the break when they were reduced to ten men after Jones made his early exit.

However, the visitors didn't panic and were celebrating again after doubling their lead from the penalty spot near the hour mark after Symonds was brought down inside the box.

The midfielder's initial effort was saved by Figureido but the referee ordered the kick to be retaken. Symonds made no mistake with his second attempt, driving the ball low to the goalkeeper's right.

Hood wasted another golden opportunity to get a foothold in the match when substitute Shannon Burchall's free header from close rang ballooned over the bar.

The home team's night was summed up in the dying minutes when they had the ball cleared off the line, and Darius Cox then rattled the crossbar from a free kick.

TEAMS

Devonshire Colts (Darrell 24 Symonds (pen) 58)

Robin Hood (4-4-2): T Figureido - D Cox, C Fosker, C Boyce, D Taylor (sub: T Williams, 75) - J Bather, E Outerbridge, T Dill (sub: M McGowan, 75), D Andrade (sub: S Burchall, 55) - A Nelson, A Russell. Substitutes not used: J Titterton, M Armstrong, M Thomas, A Ivo. Booked: Figureido, Taylor, Outerbridge.

Devonshire Colts (4-3-3): G Rose - T Eve, V Lambe, J Butterfield, K Butterfield (sub: J Maybury, 71) - Q Jones, L Symonds, T Foote - E Smith (sub: C Trott, 90+1), R Purnell, Z Darrell (sub: Q Simmons, 79). Substitutes not used: D Lambe, E Wilkin, M Doucet. Sent off: Jones.

Referee: A Francis

Hauled off: Hood opted to finish with ten men rather than have Russell on the pitch (File photograph by Akil Simmons/AP)

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Published February 29, 2016 at 8:00 am (Updated February 29, 2016 at 7:33 am)

Colts earn themselves a breather

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